Many student members of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) have left in the past few months. Two new groups have been formed from the wreckage, the ISN (International Socialist Network) and the UK RevSoc (the Revolutionary Socialists) both composed largely of student ex-members of the SWP.
ISN published a prototype issue of a publication called Cactus (http://www.internationalsocialistnetwork.org/). Two UK RevSoc regional branches have made publications: Leeds RevSoc called Dissent (http://revsocs.wordpress.com/rszines/dissent/) and Queen Mary’s RevSoc’s two issues of The Spark (http://revsocs.wordpress.com/rszines/the-spark/).
Spark Issue 1 April 2013 has the look of a cut and paste pre-computer magazine. It has 23 pages of articles on Sussex University, Occupy Sussex, University Education, Women’s Militia, the EDL, Thatcher, the Youth, the British Spring, Illegal Music Downloading and Food. Cactus Issue 0 (so-called because it is a prototype) is much more professionally presented and has 140 smaller pages of articles on Egypt, Brazil, Bangladesh, Women’s Oppression, Where Now For The Left and Culture. Richard Seymour (the key figure in ISN) suggests ‘[the ISN] is not, it seems to me, the ‘true bearer’ of the legacy of Marx …’ And ‘We do not even place an undue premium on self-preservation. Indeed, if all goes well, we won’t exist for too long.’
Another article makes a plea ‘The Left Unity project, in our opinion, has the potential to play the role of a broad, class-struggle party’. We disagree.